EBay on Tuesday reported that first quarter revenue rose 2% on an as-reported basis and 4% on a foreign exchange-neutral basis, primarily driven by gross merchandise volume of $22.6 billion. GMV was down 4% (1% currency neutral). Net income from continuing operations rose 28% to $521 million, from $407 million in the year-ago quarter.
The e-commerce giant's active buyer base expanded by 4% across its platforms, reaching 180 million global active buyers, according to a company press release. Its StubHub event ticket unit drove revenue of $230 million, with flat year-over-year growth, and its Classifieds platforms delivered revenue of $256 million, rising 4% (12% currency neutral).
Based on its results and "increased confidence in the year," eBay raised its guidance for the year, saying it now expects net revenue to grow 2% to 3% to between $10.83 billion and $10.93 billion.
EBay CEO Devin Wenig, speaking to analysts on Tuesday, shrugged off the company's GMV decline as the "result we expected."
"While our GMV is down slightly year-on-year, our revenue is growing, and the gap between GMV and revenue will likely continue," he said, according to a transcript from Seeking Alpha. More sellers are buying into the marketplace's "Promoted Listings," which "helped drive over $65 million of revenue this quarter, up nearly a 110%," he also said.
Like rival e-commerce giant Amazon, eBay is also seeing more money come in from advertising. "We're very pleased with our progress and remain on track towards a $1 billion advertising revenue opportunity," Wenig said.
More broadly, the marketplace is getting good results from changes it's made to bring in new customers and keep existing ones buying, including faster and cheaper shipping options. The company is also encouraging sellers to provide more product details, which has spurred sales, according to Wenig.